Ahead of Tottenham Hotspur’s Premier League clash with arch-rivals Chelsea this evening, Jose Mourinho has been cruelly dealt some troubling injury news…
According to the Evening Standard’s Dan Kilpatrick’s update ahead of tonight’s game against Chelsea, two of Spurs’ injured players have now seemingly been ruled out for the remainder of February.
Giovani Lo Celso has been absent since pulling up with a hamstring problem in their 2-0 defeat to Leicester City on December 20th, and the reliable journalist claims ‘there is little prospect of the midfielder returning for at least three weeks.’
While Sergio Reguilon is another who is currently on the treatment table at present.
Kilpatrick has also delivered an update over his progress as he too is out with hamstring trouble, though just like the Argentine, he’s ‘set to miss most of February.’
Given Spurs’ current form, this will quickly become a nightmare for Mourinho as he could really do with both players right now. Indeed, they have lost back-to-back matches and now face the Blues, who have a bit of a new manager bounce after appointing Thomas Tuchel.
Spurs have missed both players and their attacking influence substantially over the last few weeks and would have hoped to have them back as soon as possible.
Across their two defeats to Liverpool (3-1) last week and then Brighton (1-0) on Sunday, Mourinho’s side have only amassed an xG of 0.47 as per Understat.
Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg’s strike against the defending champions was a rare scorcher from long-range, so without that, they’d have failed to score in successive outings.
Lo Celso ranks third for key passes per 90 (1.88) but when you factor in those that have played at least ten league games, he sits top of the tree, so clearly, Spurs have lacked his presence in attacking midfield as he’s been the man providing those valuable chances to Kane and co.
Similarly, only Kane (11) and Heung-min Son (six) have delivered more assists for Spurs than Reguilon (three) in the Premier League this term, as per WhoScored.
It’s no wonder that Spurs have struggled to score in the absence of the duo, so to be without them throughout the rest of the month with games against Everton in the FA Cup, league leaders Man City and for the return of the Europa League knockout stages, is potentially one cruel blow to their chances of stopping the rot anytime soon.
Even when Kane hopefully returns next week, he’s going to struggle to score goals himself if Spurs aren’t creating chances, so having Lo Celso and Reguilon sidelined for such a long time is certainly going to keep Mourinho up at night.